Wisdom, Calling and Taking a Step

There are so many reasons that I shouldn’t pursue midwifery. Lots of them are the ones that kept me from so long from admitting that I wanted to be a midwife at all. Like the liability, the on call lifestyle, and the cost to one’s family life.

Right now, trying to discern what the next steps will be in my journey, there are another set of reasons. Like the fact that I have a newborn and three other very young children, the new legislation that requires a route to licensure that I frankly wouldn’t choose and don’t agree with, significant costs that will be incurred in order to go that route, vocational and financial uncertainty in our family, a difficult local scene with conflicted relationships amongst midwives, owning only one car, doubt about the eternal significance of being with women in childbirth, being 36 years old and only now embarking on a significant change in vocation….

There are so many reasons I shouldn’t pursue midwifery. And yet I still want to. Very much. I think about it almost all of the time.

Either I’m obsessive or called. Or maybe some of each.

Today’s deep question: Does wisdom always equate with caution? With logic? With strategy?

If the wise way forward must be cautious, strategic and logical I should turn back now. But what is wisdom is a separate thing, a thing that sometimes looks contrary to all three? And what of calling?

I’ve been spending so much time in my head, here with Maeve and the kids, trying to figure out every possible scenario to get from where I now am to being the sort of midwife I want to be, trying to plot a course that will be financially obtainable, philosophically compatible, and sustainably paced.

But what if becoming a midwife is like becoming a parent, what if it’s like a birth? Meaning, just as when one decides to have a baby, one does not have the privilege of knowing what twists and turns, surprises and curveballs will lie between conception and the launching of that child into the word… And just as when one goes into labor, one does not have the luxury of knowing how many hours it will be, what the contractions will feel like, whether the baby will come easily or by much travail… Yet we don’t let the unknowing keep us from saying yes and setting sail. We say yes because of the great joy that lies before us and then we start walking in that direction, crossing bridges as we come to them, trusting that what’s needed at each juncture will be provided at that time. The sooner we can learn to surrender the better off we’ll be. In birth, in parenting, and in living into one’s calling.

It’s time to take a step.